Yesterday 3 of us went exploring up a narrow, steep canyon out in the hills. There was Tomas — a botanist, Peter — a local organic farmer, and myself. Tomas and I are both trained runners and I guess we both thought we’d have to go slow for Peter. We got about 10 minutes into the hike, up a steep fire trail and I notice Tomas and I were breathing heavily — and Peter wasn’t. We were at it for 5-1/2 hours, wading through the water, crawling over logs and ducking under brush.
Bones of a deer, laid out in precise order, deep in the canyon. Peter says coyotes would scatter the bones, but this was a mountain lion, who meticulously consumed its prey. You can barely see the skull with horns at the top. An artistic predator, leaving something that resembles a cave painting.
When we got as far up the canyon as we could, we climbed up the side and headed vaguely in the direction of a place called Pablo Point. For an hour and a half we bushwhacked through the brush, following the faintest of animal trails, doubling back, crawling and sometimes bellying along until we finally reached Pablo Point, trails to which are now abandoned. I won’t say Peter kicked our asses, but I’ll say that keeping up with him had me totally exhausted at the end of the day. We had just the greatest time. A beautiful day, exploring unknown territory, little waterfalls on the sides, listening to these two guys swapping info about trees and plants and — getting a killer workout.
PS I love doing stuff and coming back and writing it up like this. There just ain’t enough time to do as much of it as I’d like.